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State report: Expanding businesses creating new jobs

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Businesses that are expanding and growing are adding a significant number of jobs in Minnesota.

The latest tally by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development finds that 1,500 jobs will be added in the third quarter this year, thanks to business expansions. The Business Journal said that those jobs spring from 31 separate expansion projects. The metro area accounted for 16 of the projects, while greater Minnesota attracted 15 expansions.

Across the state, businesses have announced 112 expansions in Minnesota so far this year. The Owatonna People's Press added that those expansion projects will create approximately 5,600 new jobs in Minnesota in the next two years.

DEED recently announced that the state's jobless rate for October was 4.8 percent, returning to pre-recession levels.

The manufacturing sector, which employs about 300,000 Minnesotans, led all sectors with 13 expansion projects announced in the third quarter. Software companies were second with five projects. The DEED report found other industries expanding include food and beverage processing, retail, apparel, warehouse/distribution, construction, printing/publishing, and machinery.

DEED Commissioner Katie Clark Sieben praised what she called "the diversity of investments."

Businesses announcing third quarter expansion plans include Shutterfly Inc., which broke ground on a a $60 million Shakopee facility that will add 330 jobs; Cowgirl Tuff Co., which is adding a $1.8 million headquarters in Cokato; and Slalom Consulting, a tech consultant that opened a Minneapolis office with plans to hire 300 over the next five years.

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